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Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Senate Bill, SB972 Would be Unfair to Small Farms

Image: Andy Marisinko with one of his chickens.

New legislation passed by the General Assembly, Senate bill, SB972, could make life hard and too expensive for small poultry farmers. The bill is an emergency legislation dealing with the possibility of an epidemic avian flu outbreak. The thought behind the bill is to implant chips in the birds to monitor them for avian flu.

The bill would present an inequitable expense for the small farm owner. Why is this bill unfair to small farm breeders? While a commercial poultry grower might have one chicken with a chip implant for an entire flock of the same breed of 20,000 chickens, someone who breeds many different types of birds would have to put computer chips in them all.

This from the Fincastle Herald:

As of yet there is nothing in writing about how the Virginia Department of Agriculture would handle the inspection and census of poultry in Virginia. But, for small growers like Marisinko who has 250 chickens, turkeys, ducks, geese and pigeons and some exotics like rhea and emus, it is an uncertain time.It would be cost prohibitive to have to put chips in each of his birds because of the many breeds he raises.He'd also have to notify the state when he left to go to a poultry show. He takes birds to shows around the Southeast and he sells to other poultry raisers.Marisinko is listed as Virginia's first American Poultry Association Grandmaster Exhibitor.

For more on this, visit the Fincastle Herald.

Image from the Fincastle Herald.

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  • At Thursday, 23 March, 2006, Blogger Leslie Shelor said…

    I think we will see some sad changes in this country, if this law and others like it are passed. These laws, along with the National Animal Identification System, spell the last straw for many small and family farmers. Tagging won't prevent disease but it will put farmers out of business.


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